Feeding off Zach’s post, and the clear eastern bias presented in that article given his lack of golf travel west of Windsor, I’m here to present the same article, but dedicated to the west to balance it out.
1. Capilano Golf & Country Club’s patio
Sitting on Capilano’s patio with views of downtown Vancouver, the Bernard Inlet, and the mountain range to the north is difficult to beat in this country, especially at the base of the iconic clubhouse. The patio is ideally situated, overlooking the 18th green, and seeing players tee off from the back deck on the 17th tee. My favourite place for a post-round pint in Canada, and it’s not particularly close (sorry, Cabot Cliffs couches)
2. The drive to Calgary Golf & Country Club
Long, windy roads are enjoyable in the car regardless of what is at the end, but driving into Calgary Golf & Country Club makes the turns so much better. Turning off of Eighth Street Southwest or 50th Ave Southwest, those who get the chance to play drive across the 14th fairway, in between the 15th, 16th on the right and the 3rd on the left, across the 17th, and in between the 9th and 18th. This sort of teaser should only be allowed for a Coen Brothers film, yet it precedes Willie Park Jr.’s Cow Town classic.
3. Clubhouse at Wolf Creek
The old, cabin style clubhouse fits the vibe perfectly. Low-key and chill, the wood cabin look sets the tone for Wolf Creek’s lovely Rod Whitman’s golf courses set in the prairies of Alberta. As far as aesthetics go, this one takes top marks for me, and certainly gives me the Western/Yellowstone vibe you would hope to find in the yee-haw town of Ponoka.
4. 1st fairway at Waskesiu
Driving 2+ hours north of Saskatoon, to the literal middle of nowhere doesn’t necessarily build trust that you made the right decision planning your golf trips, yet upon cresting the 1st fairway, you feel as if you should have come here way earlier than you did. The newly planted Waskesiu Tree will restore the famous tree’s original presence, and the hilly, rumpled terrain acts as a beautiful introduction to a spectacular golf course.
5. The walk from the 12th to the 13th at Banff Springs
Stanley Thompson built “nature walks” into his golf courses, and in my view, the one at Highlands Links, while beautiful, is too long. Yet at Banff Springs, the one between the 12th and 13th, on the banks of the Bow River, is just the perfect length. The tranquility of the Rocky Mountains and one of Canada’s majestic rivers takes centre stage in Canada’s most picturesque golf course.
There are far more than just five things I love in Western Canada… what are some of your favourites?